White Christmas

Excerpt from comMUSICation:

“A simple sound like the jingling of a sleigh bell will instantly make an association to Christmas and possibly call up some of the feelings of that season. No, I didn’t mean drunken aunties, bloated stomachs and arguments with noisy neighbours! I meant the warmth of the log fire, the smell of baking and cigars, and the soft sound of a world covered in snow.

White Christmas
While we are on the subject of emotions and Christmas, it might interest you to know that one of the best-selling records of all time only has 54 words, telling of a dream of a ‘White Christmas’. Irving Berlin wrote it and his lack of formal musical training meant that he composed only on the black keys of F-sharp. To transpose, he pulled a lever on his specially-modified piano. This gave his song writing a very special touch. White Christmas was a film song, first released in 1942, which went on to be one of the biggest hits of all time.
It has a most memorable melody, but the fit of the lyrics is rather strange. Most lyricists instinctively would have put accents on the words ‘dreaming’ and ‘Christmas[…]” Not our Irv. He hangs around on the seemingly unimportant word ‘I’m’ for four whole beats. Then he rushes over the other syllables, only to hang around for another four beats on the word ‘white’. Despite this, or maybe even because of this, White Christmas remains one of the most memorable songs ever written”.

Excerpt From: Groves, John. “ComMUSICation: From Pavlov’s Dog to Sound Branding.” Oak Tree Press, 2011-11-16. iBooks.
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